Tumi (Primary Title)
Tumi (Primary Title)

Unknown (Artist)

1100-1470
Chimu
Arms And Armor
Metalwork
bronze with remnants of fiber
Chimu, Peru
Overall: 11 9/16 × 5 5/8 × 1/4 in. (29.37 × 14.29 × 0.64 cm)
2018.270
Part of a set "Tumi" (2018.269)
Tumis, or ceremonial knives, have a distinctive shape that consists of an elongated rectangular handle and a half-circle blade. While associated with warriors and other elite individuals, tumis were not intended for use in battle but were used during ceremonial sacrifices. In prehistoric Andean art, figures that hold tumis in one hand frequently hold a decapitated human head in the other, thereby associating the tumi with ritual human sacrifice. In an area prone to devastating natural disasters, the sacrifice of goods, animals, and humans was a way to ask deities for good weather and abundance.
Pre-Columbian
From the Robert and Nancy Nooter Collection, Arthur and Margaret Glasgow Endowment
Image released via Creative Commons CC-BY-NC

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